The Offertory: While the priest offers the bread, we the laity offer ourselves, our prayers and worries, our very lives to God. As the St. Andrew missal says, “Let us offer ourselves on the paten, as small hosts hear the large, and during the day take back nothing of our oblation”
As the priest blessed the water and mixes it with the wine and offers it. “As little drops of water in the chalice, let us offer ourselves with Jesus to God.” the St. Andrew missal says again.
Surrounded by the exalting majesty of this church, we remember what is really going on at this part of the Mass: when we offer our prayers to God it’s not in a shabby and bland church, no matter what your church looks like. When we make the offertory, God, the angels, the Saints, and Mary are present. The heavens open up and the church becomes one with the unending song of praise of the angels.
As Mary is Assumed into Heaven as depicted above the altar, as she is pulled up by Jesus to be one in body and soul now, not having to wait for the end of time, our offerings take on a serious nature. They are not offered in vain, but brought to the very throne of God right now.
The church in this painting is the Basilica at Our Lady of Czestochowa in Czestochowa, Poland. Painted as an illustration for Kimberly Fries’ book: Traditional Latin Mass: A Missal for Children found here: https://amzn.to/3FnasK0
(For the Latin Mass loving Catholics checking for Churches to go to, the basilica in amazing. Majority of the time there are pilgrim Masses celebrated, so it depends on the priest celebrating Mass. 100% worth the visit.)
Want me to paint your church? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a quote. I paint from photo references and can add priests/servers if needed.